Comics Lowdown | Graphic Novels challenged in TX, VA, WY

Plus: The latest on the supply chain woes!

It’s almost TOO on the nose that three book challenges involving graphic novels came up during Banned Books Week, but that’s exactly what has happened.

Cover of Jerry Craft's New Kid, showing a boy looking at a school notebook

Katy, Texas: The Katy school board has canceled a virtual appearance by Jerry Craft, after an online petition claimed that his middle-grade graphic novels New Kid and Class Act promote Critical Race Theory. TV news station Click2Houston has a good overview of what happened: After a parent complained, the school district put the Zoom visit on hold and pulled the books from the library for review, per their policy; they will review the books within 15 days and are trying to reschedule the visit outside of the instructional day. Kara Yorio at School Library Journal has more details on the backstory: The petition (since removed) urged the school board to cancel Craft’s appearance, claiming that “these books … are wrought with critical race theory in the form of teaching children that their white privilege inherently comes with microaggressions which must be kept in check.” New Kid has won numerous awards and was the first graphic novel to win the Newbery Medal; both books are best-sellers.

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Mignola will write + draw a new Hellboy-verse comic

‘Sir Edward Grey: Acheron’ arrives in December.

Dark Horse has announced that Mike Mignola will write and draw a new one-shot, Sir Edward Grey: Acheron, set in the Hellboy universe. This is Mignola’s first interior artwork since 2016’s Hellboy in Hell.

The new story follows B.P.R.D.: The Devil You Know, where Bureau for Paranormal Research and Defense fought off monsters on Earth long enough for humanity to barely escape underground.

“Even after Hellboy was finished with Hell, I knew I wasn’t. I’d relocated two of my favorite characters there—Edward Grey and Koshchei the Deathless,” said Mignola. “I figured the two of them were bound to run into each other (and they will), but first I had an unfinished bit of business for Ed to take care of on his own. It was a real pleasure to dive back into that world, and I look forward to getting back there again before too long.”

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Dark Horse will adapt ‘Hellboy: The Bones of Giants’ into comics

Mike Mignola, Christopher Golden, Matt Smith and Chris O’Halloran will adapt the prose novel as a four-issue miniseries.

Dark Horse announced plans to release a comic book adaptation of the Hellboy prose novel Hellboy: The Bones of Giants. The four-issue miniseries kicks off in November and is by Mike Mignola, Christopher Golden, Matt Smith and Chris O’Halloran.

Released in 2001, Hellboy: The Bones of Giants was written by Golden and featured illustrations from Mignola. It’s one of three Hellboy novels Golden has written over the last 20-plus years, as he also wrote first one, The Lost Army, as well as 2007’s The Dragon Pool.

“It’s a thrill to return to the world of Hellboy: The Bones of Giants,” Golden said. “I’ve been deeply in love with Norse mythology since first reading Dorothy Hosford’s Thunder of the Gods in the fifth grade. I might have been the only one to take it out of the St. Bridget’s School library that year, but I read it 15 times, so there wasn’t much opportunity for other kids to read it. When Mike first told me he had this image in his head of lightning flashing down from the sky to strike Mjollnir, where it lay in the grip of the corpse of Thor…well, that was like Christmas morning, getting to indulge my love of Norse myth and my love of Hellboy.”

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Dark Horse announces 5 Hellboy and the B.P.R.D. one-shots set in 1957

Mike Mignola and Chris Roberson will write each one-shot, which will be drawn by different artists.

Dark Horse Comics has announced five new interconnected Hellboy and the B.P.R.D. one-shots set in the year 1957, wrapping up the Occult Cold War storyline from the Hellboy and the B.P.R.D.: 1956 miniseries and preparing the table for new stories set in the 1960s.

Mike Mignola and Chris Roberson will write each of them, working with a different artist for each volume:

  • Hellboy and the B.P.R.D.: 1957— Family Ties, featuring art by Laurence Campbell
  • Hellboy and the B.P.R.D.: 1957— Forgotten Lives, featuring art by Stephen Green
  • Hellboy and the B.P.R.D.: 1957— Fearful Symmetry, featuring art by Alison Sampson
  • Hellboy and the B.P.R.D.: 1957—Falling Sky, featuring art by Shawn Martinbrough 
  • Hellboy and the B.P.R.D.: 1957— From Below, featuring art by Mike Norton 

Campbell will also provide the covers for all five one-shots.

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‘The Silver Lantern Club’ puts the spotlight on those who came before Hellboy

‘Hellboy: The Silver Lantern Club,’ a new five-issue miniseries by Mike Mignola, Chris Roberson, Christopher Mitten, Ben Stenbeck and Michelle Madsen, kicks off in October.

Dark Horse Comics has announced a new Hellboy project from Mike Mignola and Chris Roberson, with art by Christopher Mitten, Ben Stenbeck and Michelle Madsen that will continue to expand the Hellboy universe and its history.

Each stand-alone issue of Hellboy: The Silver Lantern will feature a different Victorian occult investigator who battled evil alongside other established characters, like Witchfinder Edward Grey and Sarah Jewell from The Sarah Jewell Mysteries.

“Over the years readers have gotten to know a few of the people who investigated the occult and supernatural long before Hellboy and the B.P.R.D., like the Witchfinder himself Sir Edward Grey and the globetrotting Sarah Jewell,” Roberson said. “But Sir Edward and Sarah were just two members of the Silver Lantern Club, a group of occult investigators who met regularly in a London tavern to swap stories over drinks. In Hellboy: The Silver Lantern Club Hellboy and Professor Bruttenholm take a break from an ongoing investigation to meet up with the professor’s Uncle Simon at that same tavern, who was a member of the club himself, to hear stories of the glory days.”

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Dark Horse to publish a new ‘Masters of the Universe’ miniseries

‘Masters of the Universe: Revelation’ will serve as a prequel to the Netflix series executive produced by Kevin Smith and Rob David.

Dark Horse Comics an d Mattel are teaming up for a new miniseries featuring He-Man and the Masters of the Universe. Masters of the Universe: Revelation will serve as a prequel to the Netflix animated series of the same name.

Kevin Smith and Rob David, executive producers of the Netflix series, conceived the story for the new comics. Joining them on the comic are writer Tim Sheridan, artist Mindy Lee and cover artists Stjepan Sejic and Dave Wilkins.

“When the Masters of the Universe franchise first launched nearly 40 years ago, each action figure came with a comic book to enable children to further explore the world of Eternia,” said David. “Now, in partnership with Dark Horse, we will go back to our roots to set-up the upcoming ‘Masters of the Universe: Revelation,’ television series with a world-shattering comic book tale.” 

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Warwick Johnson-Cadwell will write and draw ‘Falconspeare’ graphic novel

Johnson-Cadwell returns to the mysterious world he created with Mike Mignola for the new story.

Warwick Johnson-Cadwell will return to the eerie, Victorian world he and Mike Mignola created in Mr. Higgins Comes Home and Our Encounters with Evil: Adventures of Professor J.T. Meinhardt and His Assistant Mr. Knox for a new graphic novel. Johnson-Cadwell will both write and draw Falconspeare, with letterer Clem Robins.

Falconspeare will feature Professor J.T. Meinhardt, Mr. Knox and Ms. Mary Van Sloan, who appeared in the previous volumes, as they investigate the disappearance of their friend fellow monster hunter, James Falconspeare.

“Evil lurks among dark shadows and in many forms. The vampire, the werewolf, monsters of all kinds,” said Johnson-Cadwell. “We need a particular kind of hero to thwart these evils, and Professor J.T. Meinhardt, Mr. Knox, and Ms. Mary Van Sloan are just those heroes. A cryptic correspondence sets them on a mysterious path which will lead them to diabolic danger and grim reality where evil may lie. Diabolic evil is revealed in grim reality, and an ultimate sacrifice is demanded. Their encounters with evil continue.”

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Dark Horse announces ‘Young Hellboy: The Hidden Land’

Mike Mignola, Tom Sniegoski, Craig Rousseau, Dave Stewart and Clem Robins team up for an untold tale from Hellboy’s past.

Dark Horse Comics will reveal an as-yet-untold adventure from Hellboy’s past in Young Hellboy: The Hidden Land. The four-issue miniseries will be co-written by Hellboy creator Mike Mignola and Tom Sniegoski, with art by Craig Rousseau, colorist Dave Stewart and letterer Clem Robins. Matt Smith will provide the covers.

“Awhile back (when you could still do such things) I was at a convention in Boston and ducked out for lunch with Tom Sniegoski,” said Mignola. “Years earlier we co-wrote a more-than-slightly insane novel together, Grim Death And Joe The Electrocuted Criminal, and I brought up the idea of the maybe slightly insane globetrotting adventures of a very young Hellboy. Tom’s eyes lit up, as I kind of knew they would. So there was half the battle won, but we would need a special kind of artist to bring Tom’s madman energy to the page—and artist Craig Rousseau just happens to be that artist. And Craig just happened to be at that same convention, and when I told him the idea his eyes lit up just the way Tom’s had. It was almost too easy, and I’m happy to say the results are everything I could have hoped for.”

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Dark Horse severs ties with Scott Allie after sexual assault accusations

A former Dark Horse employee said Allie assaulted her in 1999.

Dark Horse Comics has issued a statement saying they will no longer work with Scott Allie, a freelance writer and editor who used to serve as the company’s editor-in-chief. The statement follows allegations by former Dark Horse employee Shawna Gore that Allie sexually assaulted her in 1999.

According to Gore, “I was assaulted, harassed, and retaliated against by Scott Allie during our tenure at Dark Horse,” she said on Twitter.

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Dark Horse announces ‘Lady Baltimore’ miniseries

Mike Mignola and Christopher Golden return to the world of ‘Baltimore’ this summer.

Christopher Golden and Mike Mignola are returning to the world of Baltimore in a new miniseries that puts the spotlight on Sofia Valk, a character from previous comics in the series.

They’re joined by artist Bridgit Connell, colorist Michelle Madsen and cover illustrator Abigail Larson.

Lady Baltimore is the start of something big and unexpected,” said Golden. “The series springs from the pages of the Baltimore comics and novel, but it has a different sensibility and a dynamic new lead protagonist. It’s perfect for new readers, who can start with issue 1 and not miss a beat, while longtime fans will be thrilled to see how the Baltimore mythos evolves, as some familiar faces encounter brand new characters and fresh terrors.”

Per the press release, the comic takes place 13 years after the events of the final Baltimore series in which the Red King amassed power on his way to the Vatican coronation while his armies swept across Europe in an unholy war.

“There are witches and Nazis and vampires, all kinds of crazy monster action—What more can you want from a comic?” said Mignola. “Oh, and there’s art by Bridgit Connell, who is great. I had the pleasure of going back and forth with her on some of the creature designs and it was a real pleasure. So happy to have her on board for this.”

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Dark Horse to adapt Gaiman’s ‘Norse Mythology’ to comics

P. Craig Russell, Mike Mignola, Jerry Ordway and more will bring Gaiman’s interpretations of Odin, Loki and other Norse gods to the comics page.

Neil Gaiman brought new life to the Norse myths he loved as boy in his book Norse Mythology, and now the writer is teaming up with Dark Horse Comics to turn those stories into comics.

Dark Horse and Gaiman have previously collaborated on several books adapting his prose stories into comics, including “A Study in Emerald” and “Snow, Glass, Apples.” While those became stand-alone graphic novels, Norse Mythology will run as an 18-issue series. P. Craig Russell will help adapt the stories, like he did with “Murder Mysteries,” while artists involved with the project include Mike Mignola and Jerry Ordway, with others to be named later

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Mignola + Howard revisit ‘The Crooked Man’ in new Hellboy miniseries

‘Hellboy & The B.P.R.D.: The Return Of Effie Kolb’ brings back a classic Hellboy storyline and characters.

Mike Mignola will revisit a classic Hellboy story in the upcoming Hellboy & The B.P.R.D.: The Return Of Effie Kolb. The story will serve as a sequel to “The Crooked Man” story that was published back in 2008.

“Sometimes you create a character, they perform their function, and that’s it,” Mignola said. “Other times you finish with them and they just refuse to get back in their box. Tom Ferrell is one of those characters. Even as I was writing The Crooked Man I knew there was a whole lot more to that guy. And Effie Kolb… It turns out there are worse things you can do to a character than turn them into a horse.”

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